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Old 10-15-2018, 10:52 AM   #11
Andreas
 
Join Date: Mar 2014
Default Re: some notes on cost of living

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Originally Posted by whswhs View Post
Well, here's the thing. Let's look at my figures. A single man at Status 0 earns $325 a month, and has cost of living $300, of which $225 goes for food, if he has a room in a boarding house. The cost of buying the raw foodstuffs would be $75; so cooking meals for one person earns $150/month, or $5/day. So the cook's pay is on the order of $150 per tenant; four tenants will earn $600 a month, or Status 1 pay.

If you use the implied 20% of cost of living going to food in the Basic Set, then $60 of that $300 goes for food. With the same 3:1 ratio, you have $40/month per boarder. So you need 15 boarders to cover the wages of one Status 1 cook, or 7.5 for one Status 0 cook.

That all seems to drop out of the much larger share of output being food at TL1 than at, say, TL6.

It seems to follow from this that eating out is a lot more affordable at TL6 than at TL1. There may be only a handful of restaurants and they may cater to the prosperous.
It seems to me that the reasonable conclusion to draw from this is that the cost of having others cook for you shouldn't be that high at low TLs. Otherwise you end up with cooking being an unreasonably attractive job. Cooking in exchange for money would have to be illegal, carry a severe social stigma or something in order to be that expensive.

A normal status 0 wife in this scenario can manage to cook three times as much food as a working man eats, in addition to all her other tasks. If it is a full time job, you could probably at least double that and cook for six people. Cooking is also a very common skill, so Status 1 would be too high. Lets say that it is Status 0 (though even lower than that might be likely due to plentiful supply of people who can cook). That gives the following cost

75 (raw food costs) + 300/6 = 125

Last edited by Andreas; 10-15-2018 at 10:58 AM.
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Old 10-15-2018, 11:33 AM   #12
whswhs
 
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Default Re: some notes on cost of living

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Originally Posted by Andreas View Post
It seems to me that the reasonable conclusion to draw from this is that the cost of having others cook for you shouldn't be that high at low TLs. Otherwise you end up with cooking being an unreasonably attractive job. Cooking in exchange for money would have to be illegal, carry a severe social stigma or something in order to be that expensive.

A normal status 0 wife in this scenario can manage to cook three times as much food as a working man eats, in addition to all her other tasks. If it is a full time job, you could probably at least double that and cook for six people. Cooking is also a very common skill, so Status 1 would be too high. Lets say that it is Status 0 (though even lower than that might be likely due to plentiful supply of people who can cook). That gives the following cost

75 (raw food costs) + 300/6 = 125
That's a plausible argument. Can you elaborate it into an analysis of how much cost of living a single man pays overall?
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Old 10-15-2018, 11:49 AM   #13
Dr.Altaica
 
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Default Re: some notes on cost of living

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An Average wealth, Status 0 nixie's cost of living is $300/month.
125 pounds of bread a day seems like a lot for a TL1 society.

For details see: http://www.victorianweb.org/history/work/nelson1.html
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Old 10-15-2018, 11:51 AM   #14
ericthered
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Default Re: some notes on cost of living

I don't think 20% of cost of living being food is a reasonable assumption for low tech, at least not at the level of the common man. That would imply that only 20% of all the work done was farming, and It seems off to me.


I suspect that food prices for Status 0 and lower in low tech societies are the bulk of their cost of living.
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Old 10-15-2018, 11:55 AM   #15
whswhs
 
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Default Re: some notes on cost of living

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I don't think 20% of cost of living being food is a reasonable assumption for low tech, at least not at the level of the common man. That would imply that only 20% of all the work done was farming, and It seems off to me.


I suspect that food prices for Status 0 and lower in low tech societies are the bulk of their cost of living.
That's exactly what I'm assuming. From the history I've read, I tend to assume that you don't get below 50% of the work force on the farm until midway through TL5. My guess would be that anywhere from two-thirds to nine-tenths of consumption by ordinary people is food, with the bulk of that usually being a single staple foodstuff such as wheat, maize, rice, potatoes, or salmon.
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Old 10-15-2018, 11:58 AM   #16
Andreas
 
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Default Re: some notes on cost of living

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That's a plausible argument. Can you elaborate it into an analysis of how much cost of living a single man pays overall?
Sure. Food ended up at $125 per month.

Rent: $30 is the cost for a family. Since the man eats one third of the food, Lets assume that 3 such men could live in that space. That gives a rent cost of $10 per month.

Cleaning and mantainance etc.: Just like for food, lets again assume that one status 0 person could does this for six people. That gives a cost of $50 per month.

Nonfood purchases: We could again go with a third of the cost for a family. That gives a cost of $15 per month.

The total then becomes $200 per month. Though I might assume that wifes generally work on growing some food in a garden or get some extra income somehow, so I might increase the base costs for the various expenses a bit. Taking such things into account, the cost gets a bit higher. Maybe $220 per month.

Last edited by Andreas; 10-15-2018 at 12:03 PM.
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Old 10-15-2018, 12:01 PM   #17
whswhs
 
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Default Re: some notes on cost of living

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Originally Posted by Dr.Altaica View Post
125 pounds of bread a day seems like a lot for a TL1 society.

For details see: http://www.victorianweb.org/history/work/nelson1.html
That's a useful site, but I don't see how you extract 125 pounds of bread per day from it. Can you show your work?

The figure I'm giving is that a nixie earns average pay of $300/month, or $10/day. Is there any GURPS standard in which $10 equals 125 pounds of bread, or 1 pound of bread costs $0.08?
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